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Grace

The Law Is Good

1 Timothy 1:8
We know that the law is good if one uses it properly
NIV

The law is clearly a statement of the graciousness of God, else how could the New Testament writers appeal to it so frequently? James calls it the royal law (James 2:8). Indeed, James calls it the law of liberty (1:25; 2:12). Paul frequently appeals to the law and the Old Testament in support of his arguments about Jesus and salvation and sanctification. For Paul, fulfilling the law is a matter of love.

Romans 13:8-10
8 Owe no one anything except to love one another, for he who loves another has fulfilled the law. 9 For the commandments, “You shall not commit adultery,” “You shall not murder,” “You shall not steal,” “You shall not bear false witness,” “You shall not covet,” and if there is any other commandment, are all summed up in this saying, namely, “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” 10 Love does no harm to a neighbor; therefore love is the fulfillment of the law.

The apostle John follows a similar line of thought in explaining how a Christian comes to know Jesus:

1 John 2:3
3 Now by this we know that we know Him, if we keep His commandments.

The law is gracious by defining sin, righteousness, and the need for salvation. This means the law plays an important role in grace, but it clearly is not grace. The author of Hebrews tells us that “better” things have come with Christ.  A review of this letter shows us how much better the things of Jesus are when compared to the Old Testament. 

Hebrews 10:1-4
1 For the law, having a shadow of the good things to come, and not the very image of the things, can never with these same sacrifices, which they offer continually year by year, make those who approach perfect. 2 For then would they not have ceased to be offered? For the worshipers, once purified, would have had no more consciousness of sins. 3 But in those sacrifices there is a reminder of sins every year. 4 For it is not possible that the blood of bulls and goats could take away sins.

 

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